Shanghai: Customers try to flee Ikea store on the verge of quarantine

Shanghai: Customers try to flee Ikea store on the verge of quarantine

Spectacular panic scenes were filmed at an Ikea store in Shanghai on Saturday as Chinese health officials attempted to lock the doors. These customers have been quarantined due to a suspected case of Covid-19.

The images of the panic scenes went around the world. On Saturday, customers were filmed in Shanghai trying to flee an Ikea store before health officials closed the doors to quarantine them, suspecting a case of Covid-19 inside.

Several videos massively shared on social networks show scenes of chaos: customers run, jostle and force their way out of the building at all costs while security guards try to keep the doors closed and contain the customers inside.

Two days “in a closed loop”

On Saturday afternoon, Chinese health authorities ordered the Ikea store to be closed immediately because they suspected contact with a customer. A 6-year-old child who tested positive in Lhasa, Tibet, had actually previously visited that Ikea store, according to the deputy director of the Shanghai Health Commission on Sunday. However, it is not known exactly when the boy (asymptomatic) went to the store.

During the press conference, Zhao Dandan also stated that “the business and the affected area” would be “closed circuit” for two days. Customers who were unable to leave the store were locked in after 8 p.m. Bloomberg a woman who was stranded.

The latter are therefore forced to remain in quarantine for two days, then remain under health surveillance for five days. The Ikea store is expected to reopen on Tuesday.

On Sunday, health officials said the little boy was in close contact with nearly 400 people. In addition, 80,000 people have been forced to undergo PCR tests, according to the Shanghai Daily newspaper.

Drastic containment measures

Drastic health restrictions have been introduced in China in recent months as part of the zero-Covid policy: massive use of screening tests, extended quarantines and quarantines of entire cities. Such immediate measures are not uncommon in the country: if a case of contact is detected, the residents of a district or building are sometimes given a strict ban on leaving for a certain period of time.

In recent months, this could lead to panic scenes, as in Schenzen or Hainan Island, where individuals climbed over the fences, swept down the beach and left their buildings in a hurry after learning they were facing prison sentences.

The city of Shanghai, home to 25 million people, went under a strict lockdown for two months last spring, sparking widespread anger among residents struggling to access food and medicines. On Monday, the city’s health authorities reported that 2,312 new cases of Covid-19 had been registered in Shanghai.

Jeanne Bulant Journalist BFMTV